Mighty God, this is my desire: command and I will obey; overrule and I will yield; lead and I will follow.
Read Joshua 4:10–24
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
“Leaders can change situations! Firstly, leaders take the lead. That is, they initiate ideas and plans. Secondly, leaders move people to follow them by showing them consideration” (Leighton Ford).
Leadership changes have great potential for creating difficulties, whether in nations, organizations or churches. As the small print in financial adverts says, past performance is no guarantee of future performance. I knew a school where the head teacher was very effective and the school did great things for its pupils. Then he moved elsewhere, a new head arrived and very quickly the school went downhill. Eventually it was merged with another school and the name changed. The original successful school was only a memory. So what do you think the Israelites were thinking when Joshua took over from Moses? Were they excited, thinking that this was going to be the start of even greater things for their people? Or were they more jaded and cynical, thinking that things had peaked and could only decline because no one would ever be quite like Moses? This was a testing time for everyone. When you see a great leader it’s easy to forget that they have not always been that way. There was a time when they too were unknown. To get to where they are now, somewhere along the line they had to win their spurs. For Joshua, this was that day (14). But what counted was not the acclaim of the people—it was the Lord who exalted Joshua. That is always God’s task (Psa. 75:7). Jesus warned about the danger of self-promotion: “Those who exalt themselves will be humbled” (Matt. 23:12). So beware of leaders who tell you how great they are. And if you’re a
leader, be careful not to start believing your own press releases! What is clear from Joshua is that he had learned the secret of great leadership. He was obedient and then gave the glory to God (10,15–17,23,24). Simple!
Take a moment to look at “the stones” in your life. Let the memories flood within you. What do these remembrances teach you?
I thank You, Lord, for past blessings. I would be lost without You. I can look to forward to today, and all my days ahead, be they few or many, assured of Your presence and grace.
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